How Do I Roll My 401k to a Gold IRA?

How Do I Roll My 401k to a Gold IRA?

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Contributing to a 401(k) may be an effective way to save for a financially secure retirement. However, most plans limit themselves to investing in stocks or bonds, which may limit an investor's ability to diversify their portfolio and maximize the return on investment.

Fortunately, investors may have an opportunity to roll over some or all of the funds in an employer's retirement plan into a gold IRA.

Before we get started:

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Table of Contents

Reasons to Rollover a 401(k) to a Gold IRA


Perhaps the best reason to roll over a 401(k) to a gold IRA is to achieve a higher level of diversification. While it is possible to diversify by investing in multiple sectors of the stock market, this may still leave investors vulnerable in the event of a market downturn.

This is because stock markets tend to be highly correlated, which means that if there is a slump in one asset class, there is a chance that other sectors may underperform.

However, by investing in gold, investors give themselves a hedge against inflation or the negative impacts of a recession. This is because gold is seen as a safe haven, which means that it tends to hold steady or increase in value during times of economic uncertainty or political unrest.

Gold is seen as a safe haven largely because it is a tangible product. Unlike fiat currencies that are only as strong as the government's that back them, gold has always been used as a reliable store of value throughout human history.

Therefore, if the dollar were to collapse tomorrow, investors could still use the gold in their portfolios to buy goods or facilitate other transactions.

Investing in gold may be especially enticing to those who want opportunities to make money on multiple timeframes. For example, let's say that an investor was confident that the stock market was going to offer a significant return on investment over the next year or next decade.

However, let's also say that this person believed that stocks would struggle to appreciate over the next several months. As stocks and gold have a negative correlation, transferring money from stocks to gold may allow that investor to experience a positive return on investment (ROI) until the stock market recovers.

This may be especially beneficial for anyone who is nearing retirement age and is looking for novel ways to preserve capital without giving up the growth potential.


How to Open a Gold IRA


Opening a gold IRA is similar to opening any other type of IRA in that an investor will first need to find a financial institution willing to act as a custodian of your self-directed account. The custodian is the party responsible for complying with IRS reporting standards.

Therefore, whichever company is chosen to serve in such a capacity will need to be authorized by the government to do so.

An investor will also need to find a supplier that sells gold that is approved for inclusion in a gold IRA. The financial institution that serves as the custodian may be able to recommend a dealer that will provide professional services that meet your needs.

The custodian should also be able to help you fill out paperwork related to creating and funding your account.


Rolling Over a 401(k) to a Gold IRA


The first step in rolling over funds from a 401(k) to an IRA is to understand exactly what you are doing.  We recommend reading our article: What is a Gold IRA Rollover to start with.  The next step is to contact the current plan administrator. It may be possible to go through the process of rolling over funds online or by phone, which may make it possible to complete the transaction in a matter of minutes as opposed to several days.

It's important to tell the plan administrator that funds need to be deposited into a personal bank account as opposed to transferred directly to the new gold IRA custodian. After receiving the funds, an investor will then have 60 days to put them into their new account without incurring any type of financial penalty.

After putting the money into a gold IRA, you direct the custodian to purchase gold from the IRS-approved vendor that an investor has chosen to work with. After the gold has been purchased, it will be transferred to a secure facility until it is sold or transferred out of an account.

Gold IRA Rollover Fees Explained


A 401(k) plan custodian may charge fees to roll over or transfer funds from an existing account to a personal account or directly to your new IRA. To learn more about the cost of a transfer, feel free to get in touch with the plan administrator before initiating a withdrawal, rollover, or transfer.

It's also a good idea to talk to a prospective gold IRA provider to learn more about their fee schedule. In many cases, such a provider will charge a fee to create an account as well as charge account maintenance fees.

This fee may be applied on a monthly or yearly basis and will likely be deducted directly from an account balance.

Investment management and advisory fees may be levied either at a flat rate per year or based on a customer's exact needs. For instance, clients may be charged each time they speak with an adviser in person or over the phone.

The Potential Tax Consequences of a 401(k) to IRA Rollover


If an individual is under the age of 59 1/2, that person may face an early withdrawal penalty if the rollover isn't completed in a timely manner.

The penalty is equal to 10% of the amount that was not rolled into the IRA, and a younger investor may also be subject to income taxes on the amount that was taken out of that person's 401(k) and not put into your IRA within 60 days.

It's important to note that a plan may not require a person to roll over 100% of their account balance at once.

Let's say that $10,000 was withdrawn from a 401(k) and only $5,000 was rolled into a gold IRA. In such a scenario, an investor would face a 10% early withdrawal penalty of $500 and would be subject to income tax on the $5,000 that was not rolled over.

It's also worth noting that a plan may not require an individual to withdraw the entire balance at once. For example, if there is $10,000 in an account, it may be possible to take $1,000 and put it in a gold IRA in a given year.

The rest may then be held in the 401(k) or transferred to other accounts. Contacting the plan administrator may be the best way to determine whether partial withdrawals are permitted.

The type of IRA that is created will also determine when contributions are taxed. With a traditional IRA, an investor will fund the account with pre-tax dollars and pay tax on withdrawals made in retirement.

If a person has a Roth IRA, the account is funded with money that has already been taxed. This means that there is no need to pay income tax on any withdrawals that are made in retirement.

As Roth IRA contributions have already been taxed, they can be withdrawn at any time without penalty. Earnings from a Roth IRA can be withdrawn after an account holder reaches age 59 1/2 and has owned an account for at least five years.


The Top Four Companies to Work With


  • 1. Goldco

Goldco is based in Los Angeles and currently holds an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). Prospective clients can learn more about the company and read reviews from actual users by going to Goldco.com. Prospective clients can also learn more about the company's fee structure and various IRA products while there.

All new customers are entitled to receive a free silver investment equal to 10% of their initial deposit. This means that investors can potentially earn a return on their capital the moment that they sign up for one of Goldco's IRAs.

The company is also known for having high buyback rates, which means that account holders can liquidate their investments without necessarily having to take a significant loss. Clients can look at current gold, silver, and other metals prices by using the customer dashboard to determine the best timing for a sale back to Goldco.

As with most gold IRA companies, new customers will be expected to pay a fee when they create their accounts. They may also be subject to an annual fee that is based on the size and value of their holdings.

  • 2. Augusta Precious Metals

Augusta Precious Metals is widely recognized as one of the best gold IRA providers in the United States. They promise to provide clients with transparency, simplicity, and customer service that goes beyond what other companies have to offer.

A member of the Augusta team will walk a new client through the entire process of opening an IRA, funding an account, and processing the first order. According to the company's website, they will complete up to 95% of the onboarding paperwork for their clients.

After an account has been created, a client can call the company's trading desk to place additional trades, and they will take part in a recorded phone call confirming that a transaction has been completed.

In addition, they'll be able to email or call a member of the customer support team at any time. Therefore, there is always someone available to help if they have questions about their account or anything related to trading gold.

Clients can also read blog posts, watch educational videos and obtain additional resources by going to AugustaPreciousMetals.com.

Finally, an account representative can work with a custodian as well as most gold storage facilities on a client's behalf if necessary. Therefore, individuals can effectively stay on top of their accounts with just a single phone call or email.

Augusta precious metals homepage
  • 3. American Hartford Gold

American Hartford Gold may be an ideal company to work with for those who are just starting their investment journey. This is because the company employs a robust support team that is dedicated to helping individuals learn more about gold, silver, and other precious metals and how they can be used to help secure their retirement.

The company prides itself on its customer service, fair pricing, and commitment to providing customized solutions for all of its customers. Those who choose American Hartford to be their gold IRA rollover company will have access to several resources to help them make informed and timely investment decisions.

These resources include up-to-date price charts and industry experts who will be able to provide insight into market trends and answer any questions that a customer might have about their portfolio. In addition to gold IRAs, American Hartford provides silver IRAs and other precious metal investment opportunities.

Finally, this company gives you the option to either hold gold inside of an account or to take physical delivery of gold coins or bars. A representative will even work with an account holder to facilitate the delivery of physical goods.

  • 4. Red Rock Secured

Red Rock Secured may be an ideal gold IRA provider for those who are most worried about preserving their capital. The company's website claims that 90% of its customers will be able to open and maintain an account without the need to pay any service or other types of fees.

As with other companies that offer gold IRAs, Red Rock offers many resources to those who are looking to learn more about gold and its impact on their portfolio. For instance, clients will have access to the Gold Watch blog, which provides detailed market analysis and context into the events that are moving gold prices up or down.

There is also a generalized knowledge center that talks more about the various precious metals that individuals can invest in. They can also learn about concepts such as the difference between CUSIP and non-CUSIP metals and why they may or may not fit into a gold portfolio.

Finally, the company offers information about the specific coins it sells as well as details about future offerings. This can help investors make informed decisions about what to keep in their portfolios and how to maximize their returns both now and in the future.

When done correctly, rolling over a 401(k) to a gold IRA can be a relatively quick and affordable process. When partnering with a quality gold IRA company, completing the rollover is a relatively easy process as you'll be working with professionals who have the experience and knowledge to meet your needs.

If necessary, individuals are allowed to have multiple IRAs to help manage risk and meet their retirement objectives.

Remember to read our list of the Best Gold Investment Companies to work with, before investing your hard-earned savings!

>> CLICK HERE to read our list of the Top Gold IRA Companies. <<

Charles Turner


Hi, I'm Charles Turner, founder of Turner Investments.  I created Turner Investments to provide education and guidance to individuals interested in personal finance.

My goal is to make Turner Investments a valuable resource for anyone looking to learn more about personal finance and make smarter investment decisions.

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